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By: Lael - Director of Global Sustainability
Published: 10 Aug 2022
Last Updated: 12 Jun 2023
As an organization, KnowBe4 takes environmental responsibility seriously, so this year, we are celebrating our anniversary by taking care of the ocean and the bees.
It is estimated that there are now 5–51 trillion pieces of plastic in the world's oceans. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, a collection of marine debris in the North Pacific Ocean—about 1.6 million square kilometers—is bigger than Texas and three times the size of France. According to biologicaldiversity.org, at current rates, plastic is expected to outweigh all the fish in the sea by 2050.
While these are sobering statistics, something can be done about it. For our 12th anniversary (8/10/22), KnowBe4, Inc. partnered with Ocean Voyages Institute (OVI) and funded the removal of 12,000 pounds of garbage from The Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
OVI is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded in 1979 by a group of international sailors, educators, and conservationists with a mission of teaching maritime arts and sciences and preserving the world’s oceans. OVI first started its ocean cleanup initiative in 2009 and has led many successful cleanups, including removing 170 tons (340,000 pounds) of marine debris in the North Pacific Gyre in 2020, and over 91,000 pounds in 2019 from sea and from along coastal areas around the Hawaiian Islands.
“The ocean is the blue heart of our planet. It is important to everyone, as it provides two out of three breaths that we take. Ocean Voyages Institute’s cleanups help restore ocean habitat. KnowBe4 is leading the way, showing how companies and individuals can be important parts of ocean cleanup.”
- Mary Crowley, Founder and President, Ocean Voyages, Institute
Some may recall that KnowBe4 adopted 11 beehives for our 11th anniversary. Since Knowsters loved our bees so much that we just couldn’t bear to say goodbye, so we re-adopted our 11 hives through the Pinellas Beekeepers Association (PBA), and added a 12th hive for our 12th anniversary! Each mature hive, or colony, will house approximately 20,000–35,000 honey bees. That means KnowBe4’s donation is ultimately adding between 240,000 and 420,000 bees to the planet! Said another way, our bees will pollinate about 3.6 billion flowers a day (yes, 3,600,000,000).
According to the Greenpeace website, honey bees—wild and domestic—perform about 80 percent of all pollination worldwide. A single bee colony can pollinate 300 million flowers each day. Grains are primarily pollinated by the wind, but fruits, nuts, and vegetables are pollinated by bees. Seventy out of the top 100 human food crops—which supply about 90 percent of the world’s nutrition—are pollinated by bees.
Some of our staff got to visit our hives and meet with the President and Vice President of PBA. What an amazing experience!
You can check out the Pinellas Beekeepers Association (PBA) here. The purpose of the PBA is to support the Florida State Beekeepers Association (FSBA); develop and promote Florida's best management practices and other practical beekeeping methods; educate members and the general public to promote the use of honey, beehive products, and beekeeping; act in the interest of beekeepers protecting and carrying on beekeeping affairs; act as a medium for, and aid in, cooperative and mutual beekeeping methods; and encourage PBA members to act as mentors to help others.
Between pesticides, loss of habitat, pollution, climate change, and parasites, bees can use all the help they can get. The good news is humans are able to provide that help. If you’re an individual interested in learning to keep bees, check out PBA (if you’re local), or find a beekeeper’s association in your area. If your company is interested in sponsoring hives or making a donation (and I hope it is!), please contact the PBA or look for a beekeeper’s association in your area.
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